Slightly unfortunate in the rendering here when you check out the release on Bandcamp (perhaps it will be fixed by the time you read this) ''Atonomy'' or ''Anatomy''? We have both, over to you Trost. I guess the latter but spelling mistakes do not diminish the attractiveness of this lead-off track on this trio album from Last Dream of the Morning who are Mark Sanders, a drummer who for decades has proved himself one of the UK's most distinguished free-jazz drummers (a little in the Andrew Cyrille vein), Mulatu Astatke bassist John Edwards, a stalwart of the free improv scene in London for many years, here reminiscent of Malachi Favors in the way he knits in, and saxist John Butcher who last year was magnificent on At the Hill of James Magee and here in his squally fever dominates proceedings utterly convincingly.
'Free of Ghosts' has a counterintuitive serenity and deep seriousness to it. The trio do not resort to a riot of noise or that pejorative ''cacophony'' that hostile listeners feel this style of music contains, yet there is a tension to power the motion and ultimately a genius in the process of release when they do utilise brutal resource. If it is a ''cacophony'' so what anyway? To my mind the real ''cacophony'' is bland corporate bad faith jazz that might have a few tunes and easy musical architecture but is often a proxy for the bloated brainless lifestyle slumming that many labels aspire to because they have long since run out of ideas and are simply dancing to the music of a lost time.
Yes this is niche but no more niche than bossa nova or for that matter boogaloo. You will ultimately come away from this statement of intent actually thinking about improvising rather than what's on at the cinema next week which you well might do bored out of your mind listening to some daft jazzer dazzled by the Real Book reimagining, in their dreams, 'Smile'. Isn't improvising, and adventurous composition, what jazz is all about, anyway? Last Dream of the Morning answer that in delivering a wake-up call that should be prescribed on the NHS to fix all the complacent ailments that swirl all too often around in the hospitals of the becalmed dinnerjazzically brainwashed. SG